Jon Dee was the 2010 'Australian of the Year' in NSW.
As one of Australia’s most influential environmentalists, he’s taught millions of Australians that they have the ability to effect real and positive change in their daily lives. Every time you turn on a light or do your laundry, you’ll be touched by the results of one of his campaigns.
Jon initiated the lobbying campaign that led to Australia's 3 year phase out of incandescent light globes - a move that is saving Australians hundreds of millions of dollars. In 2010-11 he initiated and ran the successful campaign to bring about a voluntary ban on phosphates in laundry detergents. This will significantly reduce the environmental impact of the 1.9 billion laundry washes that Australian households carry out every year.
Back in 1991, Jon co-founded Planet Ark with his good friend Pat Cash. Before leaving to start Do Something!, he headed up Planet Ark for 15 years, turning it into an Australian household name and a potent force for positive change.
Together with Olivia Newton-John he also founded ‘National Tree Day’. During his time overseeing the event, 10 million native trees and shrubs were planted all around Australia.
For the last 10 years, Jon has been the key driving force behind the campaign to ban plastic bags - there are now plastic bag bans in 4 Australian states and territories. This all began when Jon and Ben Kearney organised the 2003 plastic bag ban in the Tasmanian town of Coles Bay.
He also successfully campaigned for the introduction of natural gas buses and was the Australian front person for the DVD launch of Al Gore’s ‘An Inconvenient Truth’.
Internationally, he started 'World Environment News' and ‘Rock Aid Armenia’ - a fundraiser for which Jon recruited the help of Pink Floyd, Queen, Deep Purple, Bon Jovi and other bands. Jon’s all-star version of ‘Smoke on the Water’ was a top 40 UK hit and featured many of the world’s top rock stars. Jon’s ‘Earthquake Album’ also went gold selling 100,000 copies.
In 2009 the President of Armenia awarded Jon 'The Order of Honor', in recognition of Jon's work helping disadvantaged people in the Armenian earthquake zone. This is the highest honor and medal that Armenia can bestow on a foreign citizen.
Together with Ara Tadevosyan, Jon is currently organising the rebuilding of a new music school in Gyumri Armenia. Although the earthquake happened nearly 24 years ago, this school has still not been properly rebuilt. Most of the money needed has already been raised and the school will be teaching 250 Armenian children when it’s opened in 2013.